Chow's total recall triggers toy story
A childhood memory was the creative spark for actor-director Stephen Chow Sing-chi's latest film, CJ7. 'It was a memory from when my parents were still together - they've since separated,' he said.
'I remember vividly that one day when we were out shopping I saw a toy that I really liked. My mother didn't want to buy it for me and my dad did. I insisted and they got into a big fight. In the end, I didn't get the toy but that memory has always been in my head, so the opening of this film has a very similar plot,' said Chow, 45, in Beijing recently.
Set in Ningbo, the sci-fi comedy is about an unemployed construction worker (Chow) who can't afford to buy a toy for his son, so he looks through a landfill and finds what he thinks is a toy, but which turns out to be an alien device. Chow said that, like many of his movies, the story is about an ordinary man who has some unusual experiences.
Chow, whose previous directorial efforts include Kung Fu Hustle and Shaolin Soccer, denied that he was up to 100 million yuan over-budget on CJ7, but admitted that he was way overdue on production, having taken almost three years to complete the film.
'I'd spent quite a long time on the script as well as on the post-production works such as the special computer effects,' he said.
Chow's son in CJ7 is played by a girl - nine-year-old mainland actress Xu Jiao (right, with Chow).
The child star said she enjoyed making the film. 'Dad [Chow] has been very nice to me. He never yells at me, when I couldn't meet an acting demand he would give me very useful guidance,' Xu said.
'I want to be a director like him when I grow up.'
Chow quashed rumours that he'd signed Xu up for an-eight-year contract with his production company, Star Overseas, in which he'd pay for Xu to live and attend school in Hong Kong. 'She lives in Hangzhou and has her parents,' said Chow. 'She doesn't need me to pay her expenses.'
CJ7 opens on January 31